Few Actual Terrorists Among Hundreds Detained by US
Lawrence B. Wilkerson, the former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, admitted today that of the approximately 800 detainees held at Guantanamo Bay since the controversial detention center opened, only “two dozen or so” were actually terrorists. Wilkerson told the Associated Press today that “there are still innocent people there,” and that “some have been there six or seven years.”
Wilkerson made other comments earlier in the week in an internet posting entitled “Some Truths About Guantanamo Bay.” In that posting he said that “several in the US leadership became aware of the lack of proper vetting very early on and thus, of the reality that many of the detainees were innocent of any substantial wrongdoing, had little intelligence value, and should be immediately released.”
Wilkerson also claimed that then-Secretary Powell and Richard Armitage were pressuring for the repatriation of as many detainees as possible, and that former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney were unphased by the fact that “among the detainees was a 13 year old boy and a man over 90,” standing in opposition to returning detainees.
The Pentagon has repeatedly claimed that a large number of the released detainees have ended up returning to the fight against the United States, but there have been questions how many of them were terrorists to begin with and how many became radicalized after years of detention without charges under harsh conditions and in close proximity to the few actual terrorists that resided there.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Ukraine's Eastern Invasion Stalls, Troops Withdraw From Slovyansk - April 16th, 2014
- NATO Chief: More Troops, More Planes for Eastern Europe - April 16th, 2014
- White House Vows More Russia Sanctions Over Ukraine - April 16th, 2014
- Since US Handover, Afghans Freed 4,159 Detainees From Bagram - April 16th, 2014
- Obama Aims to Reassure Pacific Allies on 'Asia Pivot' - April 16th, 2014